Australian firm Proteomics International has won $1 million in grant funding to support its work on the discovery and development of biomarkers for diabetic kidney disease, and the development of a molecular test for diagnosing the condition and monitoring its progression in patients. The grant, from Commercialization Australia, will enable the firm to carry out further validation of its biomarkers in patients prior to its plan to outlicense the IP.

“The currently available microalbumin test for this disease is limited in its usefulness in early diagnosis, predicting whether the patient will get the disease, and in monitoring progression,” comments Richard Lipscome, Ph.D., Proteomics’ managing director. “A companion diagnostic test that is being developed with these biomarkers may help to produce new personalized medicines, in a shorter time frame, that could deliver optimal therapy for certain groups of patients and identify those patients where medicine would be less effective or cause side effects.”

Proteomics International operates both as a drug discovery company and a proteomics contract service provider specializing in analytical services for the biological research market. Its in-house research is focused on the analysis of venom and venom-derived drug discovery, and the discovery and use of biomarkers from human, animal, and plant tissue. The firm’s discovery of an initial panel of 13 protein biomarkers for diabetic nephropathy was made following a three-year study of patients involved in the Busselton Health Study. Proteomics is also leading a collaboration with the Centre for Food and Genomic Medicine to identify protein biomarkers for diabesity (diabetes and obesity). 

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